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  1. #1
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    Wayne Kerr's Avatar
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    Wayne Kerr's Tour de Tonga

    Tonga. Rugby, big f’n night club bouncers, and earthquakes is how most know the place. Last week I had a few things to do on Tonga’s Vava’u Island and was quickly reminded of the locals laid back approach to life. Spent more time eating pigs and waiting for the blokes to recover from the excesses of nightly kava sessions than much work, but one shouldn’t complain I guess. Managed to get a few pics when the kava hadn’t completely sat me on my arse. I’ve gotta get back there in July-August and will try to update this then .


  2. #2
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    Vava’u Island - Tonga


    ^ Tonga has about 200 Islands stretching about 500 miles in a north-south direction … this is a bit of Vava’u Island which is one of the best places in the world to watch whales. The whales won’t turn up for a few months but some great sailing, surfing and diving around the island for those inclined.


    ^ Getting to Vava’u is a bit of a pain in the arse …first into the capital of Nuku’alofa then two more flights up to Vava’u … I’m starting to think that buying a nice yacht aint such a bad idea as I’m sick and tired of small stuffy aircraft that don’t serve beer … this is a shot flying over the fringing reef of Nuku’alofa


    ^ A shot of us coming into a place called Haapi … the runway lies across the widest part of the island

  3. #3
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    Wayne Kerr's Avatar
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    Tongan Feast

    The Tongans are pretty keen on eating and drinking so just about everything I had planned was interrupted by a feast and grog (both kava and beer) and must say they are one of the most bloody hospitable mobs I’ve ever met. Captain Cook called Tonga the Friendly Islands although rumour has it the locals were being hospitable just to fatten him up for the fire. Apparently the reason Cook didn’t end up on a Tongan noble’s dinner plate is that they couldn’t get their shit together in time … which I must say doesn’t surprise me in the least.


    ^ A typical Tongan feast … one of the girl’s families put this lunch of pig, taro, yams and coconuts together for a few of us one day







    ^ The more I ate the happier they were and we were expected to polish the sucker off … and people wonder why us folk working on the road put on a few kilos from time to time

  4. #4
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    Wayne Kerr's Avatar
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    Bars in Vava’u


    ^ The locals seem to enjoy a few beers to wash the pig down so they were forever dragging me off for a drink … I aint drinking so much these days but it was still fun


    ^ I didn’t get to meet Amanda unfortunately


    ^ This lovely Polynesian lass was called “Way” … after a few beers I plucked up the courage to ask if her name meant 1-way, 2-ways, or 3-ways … she had a sharp wit and replied that I shouldn’t be thinking any further than “all the way” before she knew me way better … the Polynesian girls are great fun


    ^ Most nights Way and co dragged me (yes kicking and screaming) to the Vava’u Sailing Club … lively place with a good mix of Hawaiian, Kiwi, and Aussie yachties laying low during the current economic downturn

  5. #5
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    Around Vava’u Island - Tonga

    Vava’u is a small joint and I managed a bit of a look around whilst the locals recovered from hangovers. It was raining most of the time but here’s a few pics from around town.


    ^ The main harbour and downtown


    ^ Found this small track up the back of town … led up to a nice lookout with the views below








    ^ I was lucky to get what I think is a Great Frigate Bird with a wing span of about 2 metres in this one


    ^ I am starting to get very jealous of these bastards who just seem to sail around the Pacific full time





    ^ The beaches and islands looked good and hopefully will get it with blue skies next time ‘round


    ^ The pigs are well fed on shellfish and sand worms from the intertidal area … the locals reckon this is why their pigs taste so good

  6. #6
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    Nuku’alofa Tonga

    Got stuck in Nuku’alofa on the way back waiting for a flight to Fiji … not much to do there rather than check out a few boats and recover from the excesses of Vava’u. There was a good band on the main street corner belting out some reggae and Polynesian tunes and I found a nice boat for sale … fortunately she shares the same name as the missus so I might be in with a half a chance of swinging it past her


    ^ Nuku’alofa harbour ... rather uninspiring place I must say




    ^ “Pim” would do me very nicely indeed

    Anyway over and out for now folks ... hope some of you enjoyed a short gander at life in the Pacific

  7. #7
    Thailand Expat
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    I have always said that jealousy is a curse.

    I am now well and truly cursed.

  8. #8
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    Thanks Wayne....great images. Indeed, Vava'u is such a lovely place. Still remains that way....yet a principle 'yachty run' point.

  9. #9
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    So RS were you there before they built the f'n big monstrosity the call the "Pua Hotel"? Man that joint is one of the worst planning mistakes I ever saw .

    Quote Originally Posted by Rural Surin
    Vava'u is such a lovely place. Still remains that way
    They have a pretty major problem with freshwater supply and pollution of the groundwater now tourism is starting to boom a bit but it is a small enough place with enough white arses or palangy in town to get things sorted I hope.

  10. #10
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    So now we wait. Those Tongan beauties.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne Kerr View Post
    So RS were you there before they built the f'n big monstrosity the call the "Pua Hotel"? Man that joint is one of the worst planning mistakes I ever saw .

    Quote Originally Posted by Rural Surin
    Vava'u is such a lovely place. Still remains that way
    They have a pretty major problem with freshwater supply and pollution of the groundwater now tourism is starting to boom a bit but it is a small enough place with enough white arses or palangy in town to get things sorted I hope.
    But I'm a romantic. Certainly has it's way even with all the sorted problems of encroaching civilisation. By the Wayne, do you plan an exploration of the Ha'apai group?

  12. #12
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wayne Kerr
    I am starting to get very jealous of these bastards who just seem to sail around the Pacific full time
    You dont do so bad yourself Great Thread again!!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rural Surin
    So now we wait. Those Tongan beauties.
    And aren't there some lovely ones amongst them ... I'm just at the start of my Pacific tour and holding off on the ladies thread until I get back from Tahiti, Micronesia, Palau etc ... I think it will be worth the wait

    Quote Originally Posted by Rural Surin
    By the Wayne, do you plan an exploration of the Ha'apai group?
    Well it is likely I will only travel to Vava'u but holidays I think will be spent mostly in Thailand over the next few years ... the Haapi group looks great from the air

  14. #14
    Thailand Expat Johnny Longprong's Avatar
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    Any Mongooses on Tonga Wayne? Seen any in Fiji yet?

  15. #15
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    That BBQ pig looks like the meat just fell off the bones I WANT SOME !!

    As a Tongan related aside that may amuse -

    In 1953 Mrs Betty Windsor ( housewife of London ) was crowned as Queen Elizabeth II
    Amongst the the guests were the ENORMOUS Queen of Tonga -Salote Tupou III(and her flunkeys)
    Tonga was known then as a mythical place where the people were still cannibals !

    As she got down from the landau that had taken her to Buck House for the reception
    One of her page boys steadied her and the BBC commentator said--

    "Ah! I see she has brought her own lunch with her !!!"

    Even as an 11 year old I pissed myself laughing

    I have pulled up the BBC film of the occasion and there is a strange break in the transmission at the precise moment that she stepped out of the Landau

  16. #16
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    Ungrateful Palagi

    Dude, you seem like an ungrateful jerk. these tongan people show you a ton of hospatality and feed you like a king and take you out for drinks and all you can do is insult them?? What an ingrate!! I'm a white man myself and have always been treated well when I visited Tonga and find that their people are generally far friendlier, more courteous, generous, polite and welcoming than our own people back home in NZ and australia. They would give you the shirt off yr back and go the extra mile to make sure you feel welcomed, are well feed and have a good time. They take pride in being good hosts and you dont seem to be able to appreciate that?? Makes me wonder mate. You obviously dont know Tonga very well. There are far more cons, cheats and liars in one tiny town in NZ or aussie than the whole of Tonga put together mate so get off yr high horse. Cant believe you r complaining about being shouted food and drink?

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    and about Captain Cook calling Tonga "the friendly islands", thats absolutely true mate. The rumour that it was to "fatten him up for the fire" as you say, was probably concocted by suspicious and cynical westerners like yourself.

  18. #18
    Eric
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    No It's true; never read history books travel01? You can't trust those Tongloese


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    That's a good thread Wayne. The camerawork deserves two thumbs up!

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    Mr Brown, guess who wrote the history books?? Not a tongan thats for damn sure. Its account is as biased and laced with cynicism as Wayne Kerrs account. The tongan people generously offer the man feast after feast and take him out for drinks, show him around town an he turns around and belittles them for it. In my vast experience with Tongan people and thier culture, I've found them to extremely generous and polite and most welcoming. Much more so than people in our countries I'm sad to say. They thrive on being good hosts and go out of thier way to make you feel welcome. I've been in and out of Tonga for over 10 years so I know what I'm talking about.

  21. #21
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    The 1st time I went to tonga, I stayed in a small village called Veitongo in nuku'alofa. I was doing some work on one of the new churches being built there. The locals came to the house I stayed at and greeted me with open arms. Everyday they would bring me freshly cooked pig, kumara, seafood and other Tongan dishes. I was treated like one of thefamily. Having just come from Auckland in New Zealand, I was at first a little suspicious of thier intentions (eg: did they want money?? my equipment??) but as I grew to know them I realised that this was normal for them. I found it hard to believe that people could be so open, so generous to a complete stranger like myself and expect nothin in return. That is thier tongan way, they are devoutly christian and generally good people. I've been all over Tonga and have always had good experiences like this wherever I went.

  22. #22
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    Looking forward to seeing those piccies of the girls, too. The first one was a looker and the setting was nice too.

  23. #23
    Eric
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    Travel01 you do bite easy; thanks

    Nice to hear your feedback

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by travel01
    Its account is as biased and laced with cynicism as Wayne Kerrs account. The tongan people generously offer the man feast after feast and take him out for drinks, show him around town an he turns around and belittles them for it.
    F'k me with a rag man's bugle ... I f'n despair!

  25. #25
    Thailand Expat Johnny Longprong's Avatar
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    Maybe Christians Wayne?

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